The many museums and historic sites that visitors find in the Lake George Region reflect the fascinating and diverse history of the area – from historic forts of the French and Indian War to 20th Century automobiles and boats. There is something to match almost any interest, and all can be experienced within an easy drive of the lake.
Starting in Lake George, families should visit the recreated Fort William Henry and learn about the French & Indian War through re-enactments, displays, and an educational and entertaining “Living History Tour.”
Nearby at Fort George Park, site of a major hospital during the American Revolution, you can walk and picnic among commemorative sculptures and the old ruins of the fort. At the Lake George Historical Association, find the rich history of the southern end of Lake George, a popular tourist destination for more than 100 years.
In Bolton Landing, music lovers should stop by the Marcella Sembrich Opera Museum, the original studio of internationally renowned soprano, Marcella Sembrich. A short stretch up the road is the Bolton Historical Society, a small museum full of treasures that document life on the lake. If you are interested in military history, travel north to Fort Ticonderoga, located on Lake Champlain. The fort offers daily demonstrations of military life as well as the delightful King’s Garden, a recreated 1920s era garden.
Head east to Whitehall, birthplace of the American Navy, where you can learn about the region’s naval history at the Skenesborough Museum. The Slate Valley Museum, in Granville, presents displays about the history of the area’s important slate industry. Across the bridge, you can enjoy the Pember Library and Museum, a wonderful collection of natural history specimens assembled by a wealthy Granville individual 90 years ago. Down the road at the Hartford Historical Museum, Civil War buffs can see a rare Civil War Enlistment building and items from Co. E of the 123rd Regiment.
In Fort Edward, at Rogers Island Visitor Center, discover how archaeology has contributed to our knowledge of the colonial wars, and pick up information about other sites in Washington County. Antiques lovers will enjoy the Old Fort House Museum, a wonderful collection of decorative arts reflecting life from the 1770’s to the 1940’s and several restored buildings on the museum grounds.
Visit the Chapman Historical Museum’s historic DeLong House to learn about home life in the Adirondacks at the turn-of-the-century and to get a glimpse of the Adirondacks in its Victorian heyday in the photographs of Seneca Ray Stoddard.
Other interesting sites include the Parks-Bentley House in South Glens Falls, the Kinnear Museum in Lake Luzerne, Grant’s Cottage in Wilton, and the North Creek Railway Depot Museum in North Creek. Since many museums have seasonal hours, it is wise to call in advance to check on tour times and special events.
Trails also offer a different way to experience the region. The Warren County Bike Trail follows an old railroad grade for 17 miles from Lake George, at the north end to Fort Edward at the south end. Along the way, there is signage highlighting historical attractions with maps, photos, and paintings all for the purpose of acknowledging and honoring the heritage of Warren County.
Whether one is hiking or driving, there is much to see.